SAN JOSE, Calif. — Alabama coach Nick Saban says he likes secrets.
There’s a chance Georgia football coach Kirby Smart understands that concept a little better after the Sugar Bowl.
Texas coach Tom Herman disclosed after his Longhorns beat the Bulldogs 28-21 in New Orleans last Tuesday night that he and his staff watched UGA practices last spring.
“We took a trip out there this spring,” Herman said, “just to pick brains.”
Saban and his staff are plenty familiar with Alabama’s College Football Playoff Championship Game opponent, Clemson, having played the Tigers the last three seasons.
Still, it’s a sure bet the Tide plans to spring some new things on Coach Dabo Swinney.
“Well, I’m one of those guys that likes secrets,” Saban said at the CFP Media Day last Saturday. “I don’t like for people to know what we do, how we do it, why the best way is to improve it.”
Saban said social media has made it more difficult to keep secrets, as global and immediate networking is at the fingertips of every player, coach and scout.
“I think it’s more and more difficult because of social media to not have some of that stuff get out there in terms of what you do, how you do it,” Saban said. “Does it make it more difficult to sort of control internally what you’re doing and how you’re doing it when it becomes public knowledge and information because it’s out there in social media?
“It’s the way of the world right now.”
Smart said last May at the SEC Spring Meetings in Destin, Fla., that he didn’t believe there were too many secrets in college football anymore.
“A lot of my success I can attribute to Nick and I appreciate the way he developed, not only me as a coach, but a lot of guys that worked for him,” Smart said. “He didn’t look at it as he was gonna keep a secret because you might leave one day, he was just training, he just was helping.
“So I don’t think it’s a real big deal when it comes to you leaving, there’s no real secrets out there.”
Thus, Smart said where Herman and Texas were concerned, “We’ve shared ideas and thoughts, and I also used him as a trusted friend and resource to use information.”
Alabama coach Nick Saban